NASCAR Camping World Truck Series News and Notes – Friday, September 21, 2018

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is taking three weeks off before their first playoff elimination race at Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday, October 13th. So in the meantime, here are a few news and notes to keep fans up-to-date after their most recent race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last weekend.

Enfinger Locks Himself into the Round of 6

After three overtimes in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoff race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Grant Enfinger was able to fend off the field and capture his first win of the season and his spot in the Round of 6.

This was Enfinger’s second career win.

Prior to the race at Las Vegas, Enfinger was in eighth in the Playoff standings before he guaranteed his spot in the second round after holding off Johnny Sauter in the World of Westgate 200 by 0.142 seconds.

Enfinger joins 19-year old Justin Haley as the only two drivers locked into the next round.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series’ next race is at Talladega Superspeedway. Sauter leads the series standings by 17 points. Noah Gragson is sitting in the second position followed by Brett Moffitt and Matt Crafton.

Right now, Ben Rhodes and Stewart Friesen are below the Playoff cut line. 

Playoff drivers at Las Vegas:

Grant Enfinger won the World of Westgate 200 after starting in the third position. He led 40 laps and won Stage 2. He accumulated six Playoff points. 

Johnny Sauter finished second at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He started sixth and led 21 laps. 

Justin Haley rounded out the top-three at Las Vegas after starting 12th. 

Ben Rhodes finished fourth, fighting back from starting at the rear of the field for unapproved adjustments. He led four laps. 

Matt Crafton also started at the rear of the field for unapproved adjustments at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and finished fifth. He led four laps. 

Brett Moffitt finished 11th after starting ninth. On the final overtime restart, Moffitt ran out of gas after a red flag on the track to give up the first position. 

Stewart Friesen finished 17th as a result of multiple incidents on the track throughout the night. He started in the second position and led 17 laps. 

Noah Gragson started from the pole at Las Vegas, led 33 laps and won Stage 1. Unfortunately, Gragson encountered issues throughout the race, forcing him to finish 18th. 

Current Playoff standings:

Driver

Points

Stage Wins

Cutoff (+/-)

Justin Haley

2101

Grant Enfinger

2089

1

Johnny Sauter

2124

+40

Noah Gragson

2107

3

+23

Brett Moffitt

2102

+18

Matt Crafton

2091

+7

Ben Rhodes

2084

-7

Stewart Friesen

2081

-10

**Those highlighted in green have secured their spot with a win

Last Chances at ‚ÄėDega

Of the six drivers who have not yet won in the Playoffs and clinched their spot in the next round, only one of them has ever won at Talladega in their career.

Johnny Sauter won at the superspeedway in 2013 after starting 24th. Grant Enfinger won in 2016, his first career win, but has already clinched his place in the Round of 6 with a win at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Sauter has nine starts at the track with three top-fives and five top-tens. Sauter has an average driver rating of 86.1 at the track.

Noah Gragson is heading to Talladega Superspeedway for only the second time in his Truck Series career. Last year, he started eighth and finished 14th.

Brett Moffitt has never visited Talladega, before so his first time at the track will also be his last shot at securing his place in the next round of the Playoffs. He is the only Playoff driver who has never been to Talladega.

Matt Crafton has 12 starts under his belt at Talladega, the most of any driver in the series. He has not yet won at the track but has one top-five and four top-tens.

Ben Rhodes will hit the track for the third time of his career. Unfortunately, both of his previous starts resulted in an early exit from the race due to a crash.

Stewart Friesen, like Gragson, is making his second start at Talladega. He started third but ended up finishing 17th last year.

Last season, seven of this year’s eight Playoff drivers competed at Talladega. But, only three of them competed as a Playoff driver (Crafton, Sauter and Rhodes). Enfinger, Gragson, Haley and Friesen all competed, but not as Playoff contenders. Enfinger finished fourth, Crafton finished ninth, Sauter finished 12th, Gragson finished 14th, Haley finished 16th, Friesen finished 17th and Rhodes finished 23rd. Brett Moffitt did not compete in the Playoffs last year, or at Talladega. 

Crew Chief Spotlight: Jeff Hensley 

Also Noteworthy…

Breaking Records: Something interesting to note about the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at Talladega is that of the 12 races run, there have only been eight different winners at the track. Four drivers have won twice at the Talladega. They are Todd Bodine, Kyle Busch, Parker Kligerman and Timothy Peters. Of those four drivers, Kligerman is the only driver that didn’t win back-to-back.

If Johnny Sauter or Grant Enfinger win at Talladega, they will be the fifth driver to win two or more races.

2006

Mark Martin

Ford

2007

Todd Bodine

Toyota

2008

Todd Bodine

Toyota

2009

Kyle Busch

Toyota

2010

Kyle Busch

Toyota

2011

Mike Wallace

Chevrolet

2012

Parker Kligerman

Toyota

2013

Johnny Sauter

Toyota

2014

Timothy Peters

Toyota

2015

Timothy Peters

Toyota

2016

Grant Enfinger

Chevrolet

2017

Parker Kligerman

Toyota

OEM Battle: The battle of the manufacturers continues as Chevrolet still leads the pack with 662 points and eight wins. Toyota is 23 points behind Chevrolet in second with seven wins. Ford is in third place, back 58 points with three wins. One of those wins came last weekend as a Ford went to Victory Lane for the first time since Eldora. Last season, Toyota took home the manufacturers’ championship with 856 points. 

Remaining Five: There are only five races left in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs before a champion is named at Homestead-Miami Speedway in November. Talladega Superspeedway is the longest oval with a length of 2.66-miles and 33-degree banking in corners. Martinsville Speedway is the shortest track on the circuit. It is a 0.52-mile asphalt oval with 12-degree banking in corners and an 800-foot frontstretch and backstretch. Texas Motor Speedway is a 1.5-mile asphalt oval with 20-degree banking in turns one and two and 24-degree banking in turns three and four. ISM Raceway, the second-to-last track the Truck Series will visit, is a one-mile dogleg oval outside Phoenix, Arizona. ISM also marks the last cutoff race. Lastly, Homestead-Miami Speedway is a 2.5-mile, four-turn oval with 18-20-degree banking in corners. 

Rhodes Wants Redemption: Last season, Ben Rhodes was eliminated after the Round of 6 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs. He made it into the Round of 6 after Chase Briscoe and Kaz Grala were eliminated from the Round of 8. But, Rhodes was unable to clinch a spot in the Championship 4 after finishing ninth at Martinsville, 18th at Texas and 20th at ISM Raceway. After a 23rd-place finish at Talladega last season, Rhodes was still in Playoff contention after winning the Playoffs race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Now that Talladega Superspeedway is the cutoff race for the Round of 6, Rhodes hopes that the results will be different than last year. Right now, he is sitting below the cutoff line but a win would assure that he sees the next round

Come on...we know you have something to say.....

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.